Oratory in Action

How do humans use speech to make change, and how can focusing on audience attention increase your communication skills, both oral and written? In this entry-level course we will practice oratory first as speakers, then as peer coaches, and finally as partners collaborating with Vermont organizations that seek to empower and motivate others. We will use practices developed at Middlebury in Oratory Now’s coach training program, the physical education course, OratoryX, and the new Remote Oratory Coaching service for live and recorded online presentations. Short readings and viewings support this immersive, engaged learning project.

Middlebury Contact: Ben Powers

  • Oratory coaching
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Professional communication and development
  • Community/service/project-based learning
  • Digital literacy

Teamwork and communications coaching, entrepreneurship, business development, organizational development, events management.

Public speaking/coaching, digital literacy, social media, marketing/promotion. A wide variety of others depending on the students/semester.

Apply coaching and communication skills in service to an outside organization in order to measurably optimize that organization’s online communication.

Roughly one month of skill development, one month of research and project design in collaboration with partner organizations, two weeks of project delivery, two weeks of evaluation, reflection, and debrief.

Improved internal and external communication: meetings, pitches, marketing, events, social media, videos, individual and organizational storytelling/branding.

Co-creation of a series of workshops that enable an organization to improve both online and in-person presentations. Workshops designed to improve video testimonials, with follow-up feedback delivered via Video Annotation. Culture/community building programming held via Zoom.